Absolute Beginners Book Club // Now reading: Cells at Work!

I just don’t when the next date will be, because the current book is still going.

Good point - hopefully to be resolved soon! We’ll confirm the next book in the next few days, and then I guess it will be about 6 weeks before we start, to allow those buying a physical copy to get their deliveries. You might want to look at the Doggy Detectives book which is about halfway through, but consists of three separate cases, we’ve had some people jump in part way through.


I wonder is someone who has the appropriate privileges can change the thread title to show that we are picking the next book please?

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See if you like it now:
Absolute Beginner Book Club // Selecting Next Book // Currently Reading: なぜ?どうして?科学のお話

If not tell me what to put there.

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Thanks Sansarret. I’d just put: Absolute Beginner Book Club - Now Choosing Next Book


I think the votes are drying up. Let’s give the poll on big brother rental another 24 hours then close it.


Ok, from the comments and the poll it sounds like there is a general consensus that I go ahead and set up レンタルおにいちゃん as the next book club pick. Click here to go to the home thread and get involved!

I’m thinking this book will take about 12 weeks to read, so in the next few weeks we can gather nominations for the next book and have a full poll to decide what we read after that.


For the curious on the poll breakdown (as of this writing), the specific vote numbers are:

Option Count
Yes 10
Maybe 2
No 1
N/A 3
Total 16

Thanks @Radish8 for updating the thread title and OP.

I noticed you recently removed your “advert” for the わんにゃん spin off book series. I wonder if we should keep this in the OP. Especially as you set it up so carefully to be accessible to absolute beginners in the pace and how you structured the threads.

I would personally consider all the わんにゃん books so far to be part of the book club rather than spin offs. And they’ve attracted new readers each time, unlike most “spin off” clubs that are reading continuations of a manga series. We could maybe put them in the list of previous books too?


No problem!

Yeah… I don’t know. I’ve mostly kept the わんにゃん stuff to advertising the upcoming book just for a short period for a couple of reasons:

(1) I decided when and how to run those clubs myself, without any reference to the ABC - so even though, like you say, my intention has 100% been for them to cater to this club’s demographic, and I try to time them so that they aren’t entirely out of sync with what the club is going, it feels strange to call them ABC books when they’re more like “maverick radish books” :stuck_out_tongue:

(2) I actually think it’s kind of confusing for people to see multiple upcoming or current books - it’s really nice and clear if you just have one current thing and one upcoming thing. This is especially true for the ABC where people are much more likely to be new to the forum / clubs and can already find it difficult to navigate. It’s not so bad if the official pick is a manga, because then it feels like the club is just offering a choice between the two media - even so, right now that would leave us with two current books and an upcoming manga. Maybe we could add it back in once なぜ is finished.

I agree with you about them being different from other spin-off clubs. Perhaps the わんにゃん club should be branded more like… a sister club to the ABC?


Oh I don’t know. I feel like the わんにゃん books are a spin-off from the ABBC in just the same way as Yotsuba is a spin-off from the ABC. And that’s no bad thing!

It also makes things a whole lot easier to organise at the master list of bookclubs!


I agree with this point. It’s nice keeping things simple. And with なぜ finishing and case 3 not too far away in わんわん it’s probably nice timing to have the わんわん advert up again.

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I’m new to the Absolute Beginner Book Club.
Is this forum still active or there a new one for absolute beginners?
Sorry, I’m a bit confused about how and where to join in this club :sweat_smile:


This topic is main topic for Absolute Beginner Book Club. Main topic is for choosing next books.

They are now reading レンタルおにいちゃん - Home Thread is here.

They are currently on Week 1, Week 1 discussion thread here.


Thank you so much for your help :hugs:


I accidentally linked the same thread twice, fixed now!

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Hello everyone :slight_smile:

This is my first post, so please bear with me, as I’m being thoroughly confused with all the threads leading to more threads and so on :see_no_evil:

I am happy I found this absolute beginner’s book club as I find it highly motivating to overcome the hurdles of the Japanese language together and support each other throughout.
I’m looking forward to join the conversation on the current read, but was wondering if the next book, which is probably scheduled for November, is already being discussed? Or will we read the whole series, which I think is 4 books in total…?



Book clubs usually read the first book in the series only. After that, and if there is enough interest, an offshoot book club will be formed to continue on with the rest of the series.

Voting for the next book takes place a long time before it actually starts. This allows for people around the world to order the physical book. Delivery times are extra screwy at the moment with the pandemic messing things up, so the lead time required to buy the next book is significant in some cases.

I hope that all makes sense. Let us know if you have any questions at all.


Welcome Yviee! As Davids68 says, after we finish volume one of レンタルおにいちゃん, the club will start on a new book.

Your question is well timed as it’s about time to pick the next book. We have several books nominated already as potential options. The plan is that we will have a poll of the book club members to decide what we want to read together next.

The list of proposed books is visible in the opening post of this thread - under the heading “List of Proposed Books”. Each book has a link to the original nomination post for the book which gives further information about the book.

Within the nomination post for each book is a poll, that allows people to rate how difficult they think the book is for absolute beginners. It’s helpful for lots of people to look at the nominations and rate their difficulty. The aggregate score is used to come up with a score for the overall difficulty of the book.

Anyone can nominate a book. The proposal template and instructions for proposing a book are in the opening post of this thread, just above the list of proposed books.

I was thinking we should aim to select the next book by the end of this month. This would give 2 months for people to get hold of the book prior to an early November start date.

My suggestion is that we spend the next couple of weeks asking for any further nominations, and giving people a chance to rate the difficulty of those nominations, and then look to have a poll around the 23rd August to pick the next book.


At the end of なぜ? we talked about nominating another one from the series, but there was some discussion on if we should move up to Grade 3 or stick with another one from Grade 2. Any thoughts?